New indoor memorial for victims in Madrid 20 years after attacks 11M

by Lorraine Williamson
11M remembrance

March 11 (11M) marks the 20th anniversary of the largest terrorist massacre in the history of Europe in Madrid. On Sunday 10 March, the City of Madrid opened a new memorial space for the victims of the 11M attacks on Atocha station, just below the above-ground monument.

At the same spot-on Sunday evening, a beam of blue light was also ignited and projected into the sky. This is in memory of the dead and injured who were killed and injured in the explosion of bombs on four Madrid commuter trains at the stations of Atocha, Santa Eugenia, El Pozo and next to Calle Téllez. This special lighting can also be seen on Monday 11 March, on the 20th European Day for the Victims of Terrorism.

Place of remembrance and remembrance in Madrid

The government of Isabel Díaz Ayuso wanted to create a place of remembrance and remembrance in a part of the city where 15 million passengers pass through every year. So that anyone who wants to can stop in this part of the Atocha station to honour the victims. This new memorial space has a total area of 2000 square meters. That’s four times as much as the previous space, 400 square meters.

Consultation with surviving relatives and victims’ associations

The walls are painted in cobalt blue, the colour chosen by the victims’ associations. They bear the names of those who died in the March 11, 2004 attacks in Madrid. In addition, there are some sentences that could be read on the earlier monument, which has now been dismantled. These include messages such as “no to violence”; “We were all on that train”; “You will never go away completely”; “There is no way to peace, peace is the way”; and “because of all of you, we will be better”. There are also texts in Basque, Catalan, English, French, Portuguese, Arabic, Ukrainian, Romanian, Polish, Bulgarian and Georgian.

193 lighting points for the deceased stop 11M

In addition, 193 lighting points have been installed on the ceiling representing each of the people who died in the attack. First of all, the 192 people who died in the explosions. Also, for Francisco Javier Torrenteras, of the Grupos Especiales Operativos. He died from the injuries sustained when seven perpetrators of the April 3, 2004 attacks in Leganés committed suicide bombings.

Cogesa Expats

Connection with victims of 11M attacks

During the implementation of the project, victims’ associations were kept constantly informed of the development of the work. They have always been involved in the decision-making process. All this within the framework of the commitment made by the Madrid Government to the victims of terrorism. Madrid is one of the first municipalities to have a victims’ law.

15 million for victims of terrorism in 2024

This year alone, the regional government will allocate €15 million to compensate victims of terrorism for death and bodily and mental injury in 2024, which is three times the €5 million last year. In addition to the financial compensation, the regional government allocates 300,000 euros annually to subsidize non-profit organizations, which are included in the regional or state register and whose purpose is to represent and defend the interests of those affected, their families or the people with whom they live.

About the 11M 2004 attacks in Madrid

Madrid was rocked on the morning of March 11, 2004, 30 months after the attacks in New York. A total of 10 bombs exploded, in four full RENFE commuter trains. 193 people of 17 nationalities were killed. Some 2,000 people were injured. It is the largest attack in the history of contemporary Spain. The worsttragedy since the Spanish Civil War.

Initially, the involvement of the Basque separatist movement ETA was considered. But after the discovery of Arabic texts with an ignition mechanism, the link was soon made with Al-Qaeda. In a video message from the terrorist organization, it later became clear that this was justified.

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